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Air Force Entertainer of the Year announced

JOINT BASE SAN ANTONIO-LACKLAND, Texas (AFNS) -- Senior Airman Marcus Ward is the 2017 Air Force Entertainer of the Year.

Ward, 436th Aircraft Maintenance Squadron at Dover Air Force Base, Delaware, danced to “Walking with the Elephants” performed by Shakka featuring Frisco Rollin’ in the online video talent contest sponsored by the Air Force Services Activity.

“Ward is a very strong contemporary dancer who utilizes numerous variations of today’s dance. He does about six different kinds of dance in his video, something the average viewer might not recognize,” said Tom Edwards, Air Force Entertainment chief, and a past winner in Air Force-level competition as a dancer.

“The video was extremely creative. He incorporated multiple styles of music and dance into a performance that would appeal to the masses rather than one particular group. His performance was well thought out and deserving of entertainer of the year and video of the year,” Edwards said.

Ward’s fellow finalists were Master Sgt. Robert Carter of the 531st Intelligence Squadron at Joint Base San Antonio-Lackland and Christy Broughton, 15, daughter of Senior Master Sgt. William Broughton of the 28th Civil Engineer Squadron at Ellsworth AFB, South Dakota. The competition was open to active-duty Airmen, Air National Guardsmen, Air Force Reserve members, and members of their immediate families.

The winner was chosen via online voting.

The first round featured several categories in three groups. A panel of three entertainment industry professionals judged each act on technical excellence, showmanship and treatment and interpretation of the material. They selected category winners and runners-up as well as the three group winners. AFSVA awarded each first-place act $1,000, and each second-place act $500. The group winners became the finalists, competing for a $3,000 prize.

Ward took home $5,000 after winning his category, the video award and entertainer of the year.

“It feels great. I’m excited to be the Air Force Entertainer of the Year,” Ward said.

As for the prize money, “I plan to save most of it,” Ward said, adding he plans to make another video soon and enter other competitions.

Watch the videos on https://myairforcelife.wishpond.com/2017-entertainer-of-the-year/. For a complete list of winners, see http://myairforcelife.com/entertainer/.

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